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5 Tips for Getting Along with Roommates

Two happy college roommates looking at a phone on a couchThe summer is quickly winding down and before we know it, the school year will be starting again. For college freshmen, this means that it is almost time to move into a dorm. Transitioning from living with your family to sharing a small room with someone else you may not even know can be difficult. Thankfully, when you follow a few simple tips for living with a roommate, the transition may be easier than you expect.

Read these tips below!

How to Get Along with a Roommate in 5 Easy to Follow Tips!

  • Get to know your roommate ahead of time: If you’ve been placed with a random roommate, it is helpful to get to know him or her ahead of time. As soon as you’ve been placed together, spend time talking to each other. If there’s going to be an issue with getting along, it’s better to know sooner rather than later.
  • Set rules and boundaries in advance: Are you okay with your roommate borrowing clothes from your closet? If your high school friends visit from out of town, can they stay the night? Before moving in together, it is essential to set some rules and boundaries that you think are important.
  • Determine who is bringing what: Purchasing items for a dorm is expensive. With this in mind, it is important to only buy what you need. Divide up who will be purchasing mutually-used items such as the area rug, TV, and coffee maker. This will not only prevent you from having duplicate items, it will also help contributions to be divided up equally.
  • Go into it with the right mindset: It is important to go into your roommate agreement with the right mindset. While you obviously want to get along with one another, it isn’t necessary to be best friends. To make other friends, join clubs, groups, and organizations.
  • Bring problems up as they arise: Is your roommate not respecting quiet hours or is he or she constantly using your stuff without asking? As soon as you start to notice a problem, it is important to bring it up Addressing issues early will help to prevent any problems from going from small to large.

Self Storage Specialists Have Student Storage Options!

Your first year of college is going to be great; this is a time of new experiences and a lot of personal growth. If you have a lot of belongings you are planning on bringing into your dorm room, it may be beneficial to consider renting a storage unit. Renting a storage unit can help to free up space in your dorm room by storing out of season clothing or unneeded college textbooks or furniture.

Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids near many colleges and universities. Our storage facilities have a wide variety of storage unit options available including the 5×5, 5×10 or 10×10 sizes. Make space in your dorm and reserve a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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Michigan Summer Events Throughout Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Detroit and Ann Arbor

A chef making tacos in a food truckDuring the summer, Michigan cities are filled with awesome festivals, events, and attractions. Are you looking for something fun to do this summer in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids or Kalamazoo? Read below!

Detroit and Ann Arbor Summer Events

Ann Arbor Street Art Fair

Thursday, July 18th through Saturday, July 21st
The goal of the Ann Arbor Street Art Fair is to increase public knowledge and appreciation for fine arts and crafts. At this festival, visitors can enjoy original works of art, culinary treats, street performances, and sidewalk sales. There will also be live entertainment all weekend long on the Fountain Stage. Looking to keep your kids entertained? Bring them to the art activity zone for fun crafts!

Taco Showdown Detroit 2019

Sunday, July 21st
Taco lovers unite! The Taco Showdown is back for another year and is better than ever. Included with the cost of the ticket, all visitors will get to sample (3) tacos from 15+ of the top Mexican restaurants throughout Michigan. More taco tickets can be purchased at any time. There will also be Luchadores, Mexican dancers, 12+ merchants, and more!

Detroit Jazz Festival

Friday, August 30th through Monday, September 2nd
The Detroit Jazz Festival is a tradition 40 years in the making. This festival celebrates Detroit’s rich jazz history through performances by more than 60 different performers on multiple stages. This event is free to all!

Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo Summer Events

Breakaway Music Festival

Friday, August 23rd and Saturday, August 24th
The Breakaway Music Festival is making a stop at Belknap Park in Grand Rapids, Michigan! This event will feature an awesome lineup with many well-known names on both nights. In addition to the performers, there will also be a Silent Disco tent, food trucks, and other vendors. Tickets are available for purchase online!

Ribfest Kalamazoo

Thursday, August 1st through Saturday, August 3rd
Ribfest is one of the original festivals held in downtown Kalamazoo and has been a tradition for 34 years. Proceeds from this event will help benefit Arc Community Advocates, who work with individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities. There will be national rock and country musical artists, fun activities for kids, and a contest for the Best Ribs in Kalamazoo.

Self Storage Specialists Have Storage Facilities in Michigan!

There’s never a shortage of fun things to do in Michigan during the summer! Self Storage Specialists strive to support the local events, festivals, and activities that take place in our surrounding communities.

Need a storage unit for an organization project, move, or something else? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities all throughout Michigan, including in Grand Rapids, Kalamazoo, Detroit, and Ann Arbor. We have a variety of storage unit sizes available to rent including the 5×5, 5×10, and 10×10 units. Reserve your storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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What to Do When You Move to a New City

Moving boxes into new homeMoving to a new city is the start of a new chapter in your life. If you are either unfamiliar with it or don’t know many people there, moving to a new city can also be very intimidating. Are you looking for tips for making the best of your transition to your new city? Read this blog!

6 Things to Do When You Move to a New City

  • Unpack ASAP: It is important to do whatever you can to make yourself feel comfortable in your new home, and this means unpacking as soon as you can. The sooner you get settled into your new home, the sooner you can start exploring. Additionally, having your space organized with your belongings will help to create a sense of normalcy.
  • Find your local stops: Drive through your new hometown and look for your new grocery store, gas station, convenience store, and more. This will make it easier when you need to quickly find something on the go.
  • Give it a year: Before stressing that moving was a mistake and looking for a one-way ticket back home, give yourself a year to get used to the city. It’s normal to second guess a big decision like this, and giving yourself a year to get used to the new city may be enough to make it feel like home.
  • Join a group: Are you an avid runner or maybe a huge bookworm? Look for an organized group in your area to join. For information on groups in your area, check Facebook or other online resources.
  • Say “yes” whenever possible: Whenever you just moved to a new city and are looking for new friends and new experiences, say “yes” as often as you can. If your coworkers are meeting after work for a bowling league, agree to meet up with them. If your neighbors are hosting a cookout, volunteer to join them.
  • Explore: One of the greatest ways to get to know a new city is to explore it. Spend time walking the streets, exploring local hangouts, and finding new hotspots. When exploring the city, make sure you at least know your general location so you don’t wind up in a bad part of town.

Make Space in Your New Home with a Storage Unit Rental!

Looking for more storage in your new city? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities in Ann Arbor, Detroit, Grand Rapids, and Kalamazoo, Michigan. Our storage facilities offer a wide variety of sizes of storage units including both traditional and climate-controlled options. Reserve a storage unit today!

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What Not to Store in a Storage Unit

A young child shows how to take care of her pet lizard and not store it in a storage unit

At any of our Self Storage Specialists’ locations, we will gladly store your furniture, clothing, spare appliances, holiday decorations, and out-of-season sports equipment. While the list of items we can store in our storage units is extensive, there are still a few items that are prohibited. Stolen items and those that could either cause damage or be potentially dangerous to other tenants, their items, our staff, or to the property cannot be stored.

What Not to Put in a Storage Unit: 5 Prohibited Items

  1. Living in a Storage Unit: Many people wonder if they are able to live in their storage unit. Although the cost of living is always rising and this seems like a valid question, the answer is still no. A storage unit is not a safe environment in which someone can live, and, if you are caught living in your storage unit, you could face criminal charges.
  2. Housing Pets in a Storage Unit: Just like a storage unit isn’t a safe living environment for you, it also isn’t suitable for your pets. In addition to it being unfit housing for any animals, any food left for them can attract a whole array of critters, pests, and vermin. If you are caught keeping an animal in your storage unit, you could face potential animal cruelty and abuse charges.
  3. Explosives, Firearms, and Gun Powder: Storing any of these items in your storage unit pose a risk of injury to yourself, other tenants, our staff, and cannot be stored in a storage unit. A storage unit is not the stable environment these items need.
  4. Food: A storage unit is not a safe location for either your end-of-the-world or zombie apocalypse survival kit. Food left in your storage unit will attract vermin and pests, which can ruin both your items and your neighbors’ items. It is also important to never store items in boxes that once held food. While the food may be gone, the smell is not.
  5. Stolen Items: It is illegal to store stolen items in a storage unit. Self Storage Specialists is not responsible for any items that are found to be stolen.

Are You Interested in Renting a Storage Unit?

As you can see from the short list above, there are far more items that can be stored in a storage unit than items that cannot. Feel free to utilize a storage unit to clear out some much-needed space in your home by storing those seasonal items, extra furniture, and more. Are you interested in renting a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists? We have storage facilities all throughout Michigan and in Dayton, Ohio. If you have further questions about which items are allowed to be stored in a storage unit, either stop in or contact us.

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4th of July Fireworks and Events in the Detroit, Ann Arbor and Grand Rapids Area

A family enjoys their 4th of July celebration in Michigan

Independence Day is a time for celebrating our country with friends and family at parades, cookouts, and other events. There are a wide variety of 4th of July celebrations in the Grand Rapids, Detroit, Ann Arbor and Kalamazoo, Michigan areas. We’ve rounded up a few of the top 4th of July events in Michigan. Check them out below!

4th of July in the Ann Arbor and Detroit Areas

Ann Arbor Jaycees 2019 4th of July Parade

Thursday, July 4th at 10:00 am

This year, celebrate Independence Day by attending the Ann Arbor Jaycees 2019 4th of July Parade! The parade will start at the intersection of State Street and William Street and stretch for one mile at 10:00 a.m.

Salute to America in Dearborn, MI

Wednesday, July 3rd through Saturday, July 6th

If you’re looking for a fun way to spend both the days leading up to and the 4th of July, consider attending Salute to America in Dearborn, Michigan, July 3rd through the 6th! This event will feature music from the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and The United States Army Field Band. There will also be a fireworks show after the performances.

Firecracker 5K

Thursday, July 4th

Kick your 4th of July celebration off to an awesome start at the Ann Arbor Firecracker 5K! The 3.1-mile race kicks off at the intersection of Fourth and Liberty. There is also a non-competitive one-mile distance offered as well as a Kids’ 100-Meter Dash. After the race, there will also be a Children’s Bicycle-Decorating Contest, and all Kids’ Dash participants are invited to march in the Epic Races float in the parade.

Independence Day in the Grand Rapids Area

4th of July Celebration in East Grand Rapids

Thursday, July 4th at noon

Starting at noon on the 4th of July, there will be a city-wide celebration and parade in East Grand Rapids! After the parade, head to the party at John Collins Park on Reeds Lake for musical entertainment, games, inflatables, balloon animals, air brush tattoos, concessions, and food trucks.

Allendale’s 4th of July Celebration

Thursday, July 4th from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm

On the 4th of July, bring your family to Allendale’s 4th of July Celebration! This event will start with a parade kicking off at 10:00 at the GVSU campus! After the parade, there will be a Family Fun in the Park event featuring BBQ chicken, a craft vendor fair, an auto show, concessions, and an inflatable bounce house. Fireworks will be set off at dusk.

Red White & Boom

Thursday, July 4th at 7:30 pm

Looking for an action packed 4th of July? Head to Red, White and Boom at the Kalamazoo Speedway! This is a free event with Monster Trucks, a Motocross Ariel Stunt Show, Demo Derby, and an amazing fireworks show!
Self Storage Specialists Has Storage Facilities in the Detroit, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids Areas

Are you looking for household, business, or moving storage? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities in the Detroit, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids areas. Our storage facilities have a variety of popular storage unit sizes including 5×5, 5×10 and 10×10 storage units. Contact us to rent a storage unit today!

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Military Moving Tips for Relocation or PCS

A military family together before a moveHave you recently found out that you or your spouse is being relocated? For a military family, this is not uncommon. Whether it is a temporary move or a PCS, finding out your life will be changing so drastically can be scary. When times get tough, we’re here to help. Keep reading this blog for 6 military moving tips!

Military Movers Guide for Relocation or PCS

  • Plan when orders arrive: When word starts going around that there may be a potential PCS or relocation, it may be tempting to start planning right away. In order to prevent unnecessary stress, wait until you receive actual orders before you start planning and packing.
  • Prepare ahead of time: It’s amazing how many items we acquire every month. Once you get official orders that you are moving, limit the purchases you make. Obviously, food is still necessary, but avoid purchasing items in bulk or items you will not be able to use before the move.
  • Sort through all items: One of the best ways to limit how much you have to move on your moving day is to comb through your house and pull out any unneeded items. As a general rule of thumb, if you haven’t used it in the last year, you do not need it. Comb through your closets, drawers, and basement, and pull out anything that will not be moved to your new home. These items can be given to friends, donated, or sold to help out with moving expenses.
  • Use a camera to take inventory: When moving, it is smart to take inventory of your home by taking pictures of everything. This not only saves you time, but if there is a problem in the future, a photo is very hard to dispute.
  • Make a first day box: Set items aside that you will need as soon as you get to your new house. Some items you may need as soon as you get to your house are: phone chargers, medicine, soap, and a change of clothes. These items should be placed in a box clearly labeled to not be placed on the moving truck. On the day of your move, make sure this box stays with you.
  • Use a storage unit: If your move isn’t permanent and you expect to be back in a year or so, consider renting a storage unit. Renting a storage unit will prevent you from having to move items you don’t immediately need in your new home and then back again in a few years. Renting a storage unit is also a great option for PCS moves if your new home will not be as spacious as your past home.

Make Your Move Easier with a Self Storage Rental!

Are you looking for a storage facility near Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids or Kalamazoo, Michigan? Self Storage Specialists have a variety of sizes of storage units available that are perfect for either big or small storage needs. Our storage facilities offer both traditional and climate-controlled storage units for rent.

Reserve a storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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6 Steps to Follow After Inheriting a House

A door with a key in itIf a loved one recently passed and left his or her house to you, you are likely going through a roller coaster of emotions. This can be a very trying time as you deal with both the sadness of losing someone you love and having to decide what to do with the house, but we want to help you as much as we can.
In this post, you will find a helpful step-by-step guide for what you should do when you inherit a house.

What to do When You Inherit a House

  • Take a deep breath: While it may be tempting to dive right into figuring out what to do with the house, take a second to process everything. You are more than likely experiencing a lot of emotions, and the last thing you want to do is to make a decision that you’ll later regret. Once you are feeling more clearheaded, the house will be there waiting for you.
  • Pay any outstanding bills: Next, it’s time to take care of any outstanding housekeeping tasks. For example, update the homeowner’s insurance policy, pay all of the utilities, and keep up with the mortgage if there is one.
  • Get the house appraised: While you are processing, get a rough appraisal of the house. This may be more difficult to do with all of the belongings inside, but figuring out what the house is worth may help you to determine the next steps. While you may know the original rate of purchase, it has likely fluctuated as time has passed.
  • Talk to family members: If you are not the sole inheritor of the house, it is important to consult with all parties before you make a decision on the house. Call a meeting with anyone involved in the decision to determine your next steps.
  • Make a decision: There really are only 3 possible options after inheriting a house; sell it, rent it out, or have one party live in it. Generally speaking, if there are more than one heir involved, the easiest option is to sell the house. If one of the heirs wants to live in the house, another good option is for that person to buy out the rest of the house shares. If you are the sole inheritor of the house, the decision is really up to you.
  • Ask for help: Regardless of which option you choose, it is likely that you’ll have to empty many of the items out of the house. The best way to do this is to have the people close to the person that passed go through the house first and identify any items they want to keep for themselves. Once everyone has had the chance to go through the house and when you are ready, plan on selling or donating any other items.

Let a Storage Unit Help

Depending on the status of the mortgage payments, you may have to either sell or rent out the house sooner than you would like. If you are in a situation like this, consider renting a storage unit in which you can store items from the house until you are ready to sort through them. When you are ready, the items from the house will be waiting inside of the storage unit.

Visit our website to learn more about storage unit options.

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5 Tips for Living at Home After College

Parents hugging child graduating from collegeThe school year is over and graduation is said and done, but what’s next? For some, the next chapter involves moving back home with their parents. Every year as college draws to a close, students all over plan to move back in with their parents while they figure out their next chapter. While moving home is an adjustment, it doesn’t have to be a bad thing. Make the best out of your transition back home by following these tips!

Helpful Tips for Moving Back Home After College

  • Set guidelines: Before making the move back home, meet with your parents to discuss if you will have to pay rent during your stay, if you will have a curfew, if you are responsible for doing any chores, and any other concerns you may have. Knowing what to expect before moving back home will help with the transition.
  • Make the timeframe known: Before moving back in with your family, make sure you discuss the timeframe. The last thing you want is a miscommunication about how long you will be staying, which might result in getting off on a bad foot.
  • Over communicate: A lot has changed since you moved out. One of the best things you can do when moving home is to agree to over communicate. For example, does it bug you when your mom vacuums at 9:00 a.m. on the weekends? Ask her if she’d instead consider waiting until the afternoon. Keep in mind, though, this rule goes both ways, and your parents are going to bring up things they don’t like too.
  • Make space in your home by renting a storage unit: One of the things families will most typically argue over is a lack of space. Keep in mind that it is very possible that while you were gone, your parents repurposed your bedroom into a gym, study, or library. A great way to keep your college furniture, appliances, and more from cramping your parents’ space is to rent a storage unit.
  • Reconnect with old friends while your home: One big perk of moving home after college is that you’re able to reconnect with old hometown friends. This can be a huge perk because it allows you to see friends you may have grown distant from during college.

We Have Storage Facilities in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, MI!

Looking for a storage unit near you? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities all throughout both Michigan and Ohio and in major cities such as: Detroit, Ann Arbor, Kalamazoo, and Grand Rapids, Michigan Whether you are looking to store either a few larger items from your dorm that do not fit back home or furniture pieces from your apartment, we have the perfect storage solution for you! Reserve your storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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Things to Do in Michigan Memorial Day Weekend 2019

Marching in a Memorial Day paradeOne very popular thing to do during Memorial Day weekend is to attend parades. Are you looking for a Memorial Day parade near you in Detroit, Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, or Kalamazoo, Michigan? Check out this blog for a complete list of Michigan Memorial Day parades!

Memorial Day Michigan 2019 Events

Detroit and Ann Arbor Memorial Day Parade

2019 Memorial Day Parade Glacier Highlands Park

Monday, May 27th at 10:00 am
Starting at 10:00 am, the parade will leave Greenbrier Park and head to Glacier Highlands Park. At Glacier Highlands Park, there will be a service to honor the men and women who gave their lives for our country. After the service, there will be free coffee and donuts available to all parade attendees. There will also be food vendors selling hot dogs, Mexican food, and more.

Plymouth Memorial Day Parade

Monday, May 27th at 9:00 am
The Plymouth Memorial Day Parade will take place on Memorial Day starting at 9:00 am. This event will end in Veteran’s Park at Main and Church Streets. After the parade, there will be a special program to salute the veterans.

Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo Memorial Day Parade

Grand Haven Memorial Day Parade

Monday, May 27th at 9:30 am
On Memorial Day, the United States Coast Guard will lead the parade down Washington Avenue from 6th street to Harbor Drive. The parade will end in Waterfront Stadium where there will be a short Memorial Day ceremony. Following the ceremony, there will be music from the Grand Haven High School Band.

Kalamazoo Memorial Day Parade

Monday, May 27th at 10:00 am
The annual Kalamazoo Memorial Day Parade will kick off at 10:00 am on Memorial Day. The parade will proceed from the downtown area to Riverside Cemetery, with a wreath dedication at Rose Park Veterans Memorial at the Riverside Cemetery.

Grand Rapids Memorial Day Parade

Thursday, May 30th, 2019 at 7:00 pm
This year, the Grand Rapids Memorial Day Parade will take place on Thursday, May 30th. The parade will start at Lyon Street and Monroe Avenue and head up Monroe Center. After the parade, there will be a ceremony event at Veterans Park.

Self Storage Specialists Has Storage Facilities All Throughout Michigan

Looking for a storage unit in the Ann Arbor, Grand Rapids, Detroit, or Kalamazoo areas? Self Storage Specialists have storage facilities all throughout Michigan and in Dayton, Ohio. Our storage facilities have both traditional and climate-controlled storage units, ideal to fit any storage need! Reserve your storage unit with Self Storage Specialists today!

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8 Essential Tips for Preparing Your House for Vacation

Packing a suitcase for vacationAre you planning a summer vacation? While it can be nice to get out of the house for a while, it’s common to worry about the safety of your home. We’ve compiled a list of tips for preparing your home for vacation that can help keep your mind at ease while you’re gone. Check them out below!

Preparing Your Home for Vacation in 8 Easy to Follow Tips

  1. Stop the mail: A telltale sign that someone hasn’t been home for a while is mail piling up at the door. Before you leave for your trip, it is important to either stop your mail or have a trusted friend, family member, or neighbor pick up your mail every day.
  2. Put your lights on a timer: The best way to deter crime is to make it look like someone is living in your home. Put at least a few lights on a timer that will randomly turn on throughout the evening.
  3. Use outdoor lighting: Burglars don’t like outdoor lighting, which is why it’s a great idea to take advantage of it! Motion-activated lights are a great investment, and can really help to make your homeless appealing to burglars.
  4. Take out the trash: The last thing you want when you get home from vacation is to walk into a home with old bags of trash that had time to rot. Before leaving on vacation, empty out all of the trash bins.
  5. Clear out the refrigerator: Comb through your refrigerator and pull out any items that may spoil. This will prevent any perishable items from going bad while you’re gone.
  6. Turn off the water: Before you leave for your trip, be sure to turn off the water. Your appliances will not need water while you are gone, and you run the risk of coming home to a leak if it is left on.
  7. Unplug all electronics and appliances: Take care to unplug all expensive electronics and appliances before you leave for vacation. This will not only protect your items during a storm, but it will also help to reduce energy consumption.
  8. Check the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors: Before you leave for vacation, check to make sure that both the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors have fresh batteries. This will help to alert someone should there be a problem while you’re gone.

Keep Your Home Organized Year Round with a Storage Unit Rental!

Are you looking for a storage solution to create more space around your home? Look no further than a storage unit with our Self Storage Specialists! We have a variety of sizes of storage units available for rent including our 5×5, 5×10 and 10×10 units. Free up some space in your home, and rent a storage unit with us today!

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